Matt Keys, Managing Director
Matt Keys has 15 years professional experience in the field of Environmental Planning and has dedicated his career to the protection and enhancement of the natural environment. Matt commenced his career in 1991 working for the Australian Conservation Foundation. In this capacity he served in environmental planning policy formulation and implementation.
In 1994 he was seconded to Surfrider Foundation, Australia. Surfrider Foundation is an international marine conservation organization operating in 18 countries. Between 1994 and 1996 Matt served as the National Campaign Manager prior to being appointed as Executive Director. In his position as Executive Director, Matt was responsible for the management of the entire organization including its 52 branches nationwide.
In 1998 he founded Habitat, recognizing the growing need for quality environment planning services.
This proved to be a far sighted vision and today Habitat provides employment to a range of environment scientists, open space planners, environmental rehabilitation specialists and landscape construction professionals. Habitat is a recognised industry leader consistently delivering high quality results for their clients. Results which are reflected by the high caliber of their clients and the amount of return business that Habitat recieves.
Equally, Habitat is proud to work with some of Australia’s best Town Planning, Civil Engineering and Development Planning firms.
Matt has served on local, State and Federal environment advisory boards and has won numerous environmental awards. During a distinguished career Matt has a number of significant highlights. He regards leading the successful lobbying of the Qld and NSW Governments to ban new ocean sewage outfall construction as his personal favourite.
This caused a fundamental change in how sewage effluent was managed and literally forced local governments to implement effluent reuse strategies and upgrade treatment facilities. Matt’s primary argument was based on the fact that at some point in the future, during severe drought, effluent would be regarded as a high value product. If sewage treatment facilities were upgraded, this product could be safely reused during times of critical water shortages. To say nothing of the enormous ecological benefits drawn from no longer dumping sewage into the ocean.
Twelve years ago the prospect of reusing effluent was extremely unpopular and he met very strong opposition in this regard. However, he persisted and managed to lobby both State Governments to ban new outfalls. This meant that local governments could no longer waste the effluent by dumping it into the ocean and were forced to upgrade their treatment facilities and implement reuse strategies.
This initiative has had massive positive impacts to not only NSW and Qld but to the entire nation. In this regard, he has contributed a major role in changing Australia’s thinking in regard to water resource management. An achievement which is serving our nation very well during our current severe drought.
Long sighted vision and commitment for a man who was only 25 years old at the time.
While Matt has always had the big picture in mind, he understands that it’s the cumulative effect of all smaller projects that go into creating the bigger picture. As such, he has worked on over 300 different environment planning projects. Each project has been specifically focused toward individual site characteristics. These projects have ranged from major infrastructure projects right down to small residential subdivisions.
Matt wrote Habitats' first Environment Planning report and planted the trees on Habitats' first Land Management project. He continues to take an active interest in each and every project that Habitat conducts to this day.
This range of projects and his overall environment industry experience over the past 15 years have created a man who is highly capable of leading a company that is dedicated to delivering excellence in all facets of Environmental and Land Management services.
"Do it once and do it well. Understand that yesterday's best is today's not good enough! Build a better Australia." Matt Keys